Activating 20th Century Cause Marketing via 21st Century Social Media

One of the first business categories to really adopt cause marketing was consumer packaged goods. Those early CPG promotions frequently went something like this: The sponsor would run an ad in a free-standing insert or FSI, which are those booklets of coupons that drop in local newspapers once a week or so. The donation was based on the number of coupons consumers redeemed. So the pitch was, 'get cents off your purchase while some more cents go to a cause.' Naturally, the FSIs served as the principal form of activation for the promotion

Now Naked Juice, a consumer packaged goods company with a long history of cause marketing, is activating their current effort via social media. At left is their Twitter page. About every fifth tweet is one that features the #gooddeeds hashtag.

They switch up the wording, but all the tweets with the #gooddeeds hashtag mention that you can get a coupon at Point your browser there and up pops a $1-off printable coupon. There’s also a cute little slide show actuated by a slide bar that explains the cause marketing promotion in less than 10 slides. Too bad you can't just show the coupon on your mobile to the store cashier.

There is a pound of produce in every bottle of Naked Juice, we’re informed. So for every coupon printed, Naked Juice will donate a pound of fresh produce to an underserved community, up to 100,000 pounds. Sound familiar?

And, we learn, Naked has…um… seeded the effort with a donation of 50,000 pounds of produce to underserved communities. That’s smart. It shows that the cause is going to do fine no matter what.

The promotion gives off a wonderful sort of  “back to the future” vibe. And that vibe was made all the more palpable when I realized that the company that is administering the Naked Juice coupon is none other than SmartSource, one of the two main players in the FSI business!

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